GTOD VIGIL RECIPE - Käeßsuppen - Cheese Spread (not soup) - Marx Rumpolt, Ein New Kochbuch, c. 1581



Original Recipe:

Nimm ein neuwen Käeß/ der vber Nacht gemacht ist/ vnd rüer jhn ab mit saurem Rahm/ thu frische Butter darein/ vnd laß darmit auffsieden/ so zergehet der Käeß. Vnnd wenn du wilt anrichten/ so nimm gebeht Schnitten Brot/ oder von Weck/ vnd geuß die Brüeh darüeber/ so ist es ein gute Vngerische Käeßsuppen. 

46 Take a new cheese/ that (was) made overnight/ and stir it up with soured cream/ put fresh butter therein/ and let (it) come to a boil therewith/ so the cheese breaks down. And when you want to prepare it (serve it)/ so take sliced bread/ or from a loaf. And pour the broth over (it)/ so is a good Hungarian cheese soup. 

This recipe reminds me of Sir Kenelm Digby's Savoury Tostyde which is absolutely out of this world delicious. 

We will start with similar proportions as those given by Digby, which creates a very delicious "cheese goo", that can be made ahead and heated day of.  

1/2 lb butter 
1/2 lb cream cheese - Sub sour cream 
1/8 lb new cheese

**1/4 t white pepper (to taste)
**Salt to taste

YUM

Day 2: What is a "New Cheese" 

The recipe specifies "a new cheese / that was made overnight"  so it is assumed that while this "soup" is supposed to be flavorful, it is to be a mild flavor.  Fortunately, we don't have to look very far for instructions on how to make a "New Cheese".  The " Nyeuwen cooc boeck by Gheeraert Vorselman" supplies the following recipe: 

2.198 Om plattekaas te maken

Neem wat stremsel, doe het in room of melk en laat dat een nacht staan bezinken. Doe het dan in de [kaas]mandjes. Leg [eerst] in de mandjes schone doekjes, en giet de gestremde melk erin. Belast het met een steen en laat het dan uitlekken. Doe er dikke room over.

2.198 To make fresh (soft) cheese

Take some rennet, add it to cream or milk and let it set for a night. Then put it in [cheese] baskets. [First] put clean cloth in the baskets, then pour in the curds. Weigh it down with a stone and then let it drain. Pour fat cream over it.

Rennet
Milk
**Salt

I have not worked with rennet to make cheese before.  I am very familar with the cheese made from adding an acid agent to it.  In order to better learn how to do this, I visited one of my favorite blogs-Grow, Forage, Cook, Ferment, who has a very well written set of instructions for making a simple rennet cheese.

Third Day - Test Recipe

The test recipe was made using 2 tbsp. large curd cottage cheese, 2 tbsp. sour cream and 1 tbsp. butter, pinch of white pepper. I chose cottage cheese because it is similar to fresh made acidic cheese (the process is the same) and appears to resemble the simple rennet cheese from previous research.  There are four kinds of  ready made fresh cheeses that can be purchased; the most period appropriate (for this event)  is quark followed by cream or cottage cheeses. Since the cheese is not specified as acid or rennet created, only new, I chose cottage cheese for it's overall availability.

First impression - not bad but it could be better.  This creats a tangy soup with lumps of cheese curd in it.  I was hoping the cottage cheese would break down a bit more, but instead it firmed up and became chewy which I did not care for.  This may change if using something like "quark", and I know it will be smooth using "cream cheese".

Instead of using a "new cheese" I might opt for something along the lines of a Gouda or Muenster or a mix of the two.  Both Gouda and Munster enjoy a long history. Gouda is dated to around 1184 and is a Dutch cheese.  Munster is a French cheese, not to be confused with Muenster, which is an American made cheese that imitates the French style of cheese. 

The advantages of using these two semi-soft cheeses is that they are a little more flavorful then cottage cheese, and will stand up better to the sour cream which overpowered the cottage cheese.  Additionally, I am hoping for a creamier smoother soup, vs a creamy soup with the occasional lump.  Personal preference. 

Alternatively, cream cheese could be used with a little bit of "another cheese" for color and flavor.  We will see. 

Fourth Day

This recipe really bother's me. So I'm doing more research. On to my favorite site for research "Medieval Cookery" hosted by Dan Myers, where I did a search on "cheese". I found another recipe from a similar time period and same region for brouet (brodittum) of cheese in the Registrum Coquine hosted by Volker Bach! WIN!

Thus make a brouet (brodittum) of cheese. Take fresh cheese mixed with eggs, and add saffron with other sweet spices. After that, take fat broth and put it in, and do not stir (moveas) it until you wish to eat it. Then put into (serving) dishes as much as you wish, and put the spices on top. And this will be for Frenchmen and Englishmen.

This seems to be a more workable recipe and more familiar to modern tastes then the previous and therefore this *might* be what I will work with.  

Ingredients

Cheese (fresh)
Eggs
Saffron
"other sweet spices"
Broth

This has a close resemblence to my interpretation of  "Arbolettys" which creates a very cheesy comforting soup flavored with sage.  It is delicious. 

A comparison between arbolettys and the brouet of cheese ingredients yields the following differences: 

Milk instead of broth
No Butter
Herbs in addition to spices (parsley & sage)

A comparison of the brouet of cheese to the original recipe for  Käeßsuppen yields the following differences: 

No eggs
No Saffron
Sour cream instead of broth
No spices or herbs

I will be testing the brouet of cheese later today.  Here are my thoughts on the recipe which should be enough to create a single serving of soup. 

Test Recipe

1 cup broth (chicken)
2 tbsp butter
1/4 cup or to taste cottage cheese mixed (it's what I have)
2 eggs

Similar Recipes: 

Fourme of Curye [Rylands MS 7] - .lxxxlx. Brewet of ayroun.

Gentyll manly Cokere (MS Pepys 1047) - Egges yn brewte.

Something to look forward too for LUNCH!! 

Day 5--AARGHS!!

Armed with the original recipe's ingrdients I've spent the past several days researching.  I think, it's not a soup.  I think it's a sop, that is, something that goes on top of bread.  This is why.

With the exception of seasoning, the original recipes ingredients are directly identical to modern day Pfälzer Spundekäs, a spread that is regionally associated with North Rhein Westphalia and Rhineland Palatinate. It is a cheese paste, typically served on toasted bread or with pretzels. 

Here is the recipe--note, butter is missing in favor of onion, garlic, pepper, salt and paprika.  I was correct in the assumption that this resembles Digby's cheese goo.  So do I want to serve a spread on toasty bread or a soup in a bread bowl? 

Ingredients

4 ounces cream cheese
4 ounces Quark cheese
1/2 cup sour cream (100 ml)
4 tbsp. butter
1/2 onion
garlic
pepper
salt
2 teaspoons paprika

Instructions

Mix the cream cheese, quark and sour cream together in a bowl and beat until creamy. Dice the onions finely and add to the mixture. Season with pressed garlic, paprika, salt and pepper and allow to sit for 3 hours in a refrigerator.

Final Decision -- There is no soup at this feast, there will however be great slabs of the pastry flavored with fennel and bacon and made with a mixture of wheat and rye, assorted cured meats and/sausages, the mustard pickled vegetables, and the pears in syrup for the first course.  YUM!!

I will include the salt and pepper for modern taste, but none of the other spices in the modern recipe.  I do plan on serving an onion relish though, that should make up for any loss of flavor by not including the garlic, onion, pepper or paprika.  

Recipe

1 cup quark or cottage cheese
4 TBSP unsalted butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup sour cream

Note: Although not period to make a smoother sauce add 1/2 tsp. baking soda if you are using cottage cheese. 

Mix all ingredients, cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place for 1 hour.

Then put it into a heavy bottomed pan (or double broiler) and simmer over low heat stirring  with a wisk until cheese has started to melt and everything has blended to a smooth consistency. Can be made ahead of time and heated day of. 

Homemade Quark - Instapot recipe

1/2 gallon whole milk
1 quart butter milk
Cheese cloth

Put the milk and buttermilk in Instant Pot and set for Yogurt. Put the lid on and press ‘YOGURT’ then ‘ADJUST.’ Hold the adjust button until it says ‘BOIL.’ Then after it beeps press ‘YOGURT ‘ and set time for 13 hours (overnight). Once done put cheese cloth in a strainer over large bowl and pour out, reserving the liquid (whey). I used that later for the ricotta. Put in fridge for another six hours in cheese cloth over a bowl to continue to drain. Then use as desired.

 

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